The Schoolhouse in the Forest

By Chef JRHEvilInc/Joel R Hunt

//Source.

//This is part of a series. Click here for part one.

I’m writing this because I need to make sense of what’s going through my head. I’ll admit it; I’m scared. And I know that if I close my eyes and try to sleep, my mind will be making monsters out of every creak of the house and every howl of the wind. I’m in that state where I don’t even want to make a noise, because part of me is worried that, if I do, I’ll hear a reply.

I know I’m being irrational. If I just get all of this written down I’ll see how ridiculous it is and I’ll be able to move past it. It will become impossible to deny that my fear is based on something absurd.

Ockham’s Razor. The true explanation is often the simplest.

That puppet is not watching me.

It started yesterday morning.  Continue reading “The Schoolhouse in the Forest”

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The First Parents

By Chef JRHEvilInc/Joel R Hunt

//Source.

//This is the first of a series. Click here for part two.

“Mum, don’t worry about it. It’s just a splash, she won’t care.”

Mum doesn’t listen, already whipping the cloth off of the table and folding it over her arm.

“No, no, I want everything to be perfect,” she says, running a finger over the table to make sure the stain hasn’t gone down to the wood, “She deserves a real family meal, something nice. She doesn’t want to come home to a… a… warzone!”

“Good choice of words,” mutters my brother with a smirk. Mum shoots him a look, then turns to me.

“Fetch the fresh tablecloth, would you? It’s in the linen closet.”  Continue reading “The First Parents”

The Puppet

By Chef KI Simpson

puppetIt was a marionette, I think. It had a big head, the face was made of wrinkly, flesh colored rubber. The eyes were gigantic, bulging white orbs with red pupils. The hair was black, made of some hard substance that didn’t mesh with the rubbery head. The teeth were gigantic, pure white and capable of moving up and down. The body and limbs were wooden, painted to resemble clothes, but the paint was faded, you could see the wood’s natural brown in some places. Each arm and leg was a different length, but the hands and feet were pretty detailed. It made a loud clattering sound whenever it moved.

That puppet… followed me. I don’t mean it got up and chased me. I mean it kept showing up in my life. My earliest memory of it is from my first birthday. I obviously don’t remember the full details of that day, but I remember my parents singing happy birthday and that puppet. I don’t know what it was there for; I just remember it scared me to death and I couldn’t stop crying. When I was able to talk, I asked my parents about it, and they said nothing like that had happened on my first birthday. They must not have thought lying about it would make things easier for me.

The next time I saw it, I was around three. I was exploring a room filled with old stuff my parents had stored away and I found a calendar, but I don’t remember the year. There was a photo for each month, but the only one I remember was October; that puppet was the image for it. I got scared and ran out of the room. I told my mom and tried to show her the calendar so that she’d know the puppet was real, but I couldn’t find it. The room had been very messy, and I had ran out of it so quickly I knocked over piles of stuff, I guess the calendar got buried.

I was six when it happened again. It was the middle of the night, I woke up from a nightmare I can’t remember the details of. I was too scared to go back to sleep, so I went into the living room and turned on the TV. An old black and white show on Nick at Nite was ending and when the commercials started, that puppet came on. It was dancing while loud music played. I screamed and started crying uncontrollably, but by the time my parents got downstairs, the puppet was gone.

I didn’t see the puppet again for a while after that, but I kept having nightmares about it. When I was 15, I decided to try to track it down, using the internet to try to find information about the calendar, the short, anything. No one had ever heard of it, but one day I got an instant message from someone I had never talked to before. Their screen name was a random mash-up of numbers and letters, but their avatar was a picture of the puppet. They IMed me, “Glad that you still remember me,” then immediately signed off. They never contacted me or came online again.

When I was 20, I was walking by a store that sold old toys and dolls, and in the front window, I saw the puppet. I went inside, and asked the clerk if he knew anything about that puppet’s history, when it was made, where it was from, anything. He didn’t, said the puppet had just been sold to the store a few days ago, I could have it for $6. I wasn’t sure what to do, it still scared me, but having proof that it really existed seemed like a good idea. I bought the puppet, and took it home.

For a while, I felt better. I viewed the puppet as a childhood fear I had overcome as an adult and even started to believe the explanations my parents had given me for the past appearances of it (I saw it somewhere else as a baby, imagined the calendar, dreamed the TV short, and someone online who had played a trick on me).

I kept the puppet, but as I moved on in my life, I pretty much forgot about it. I finished college, got married, and my wife should be giving birth in a few weeks. I was cleaning up a room for when the baby comes, and found the puppet, dusty and abandoned. I didn’t want my kid seeing it when he was little, so I picked it up, and decided I might as well wipe the dust off before moving it to another place. When I dusted it, I noticed a faded inscription on the back: “This is what he’ll look like.” Before I could figure out what this meant, I heard my wife starting to cry. I rushed to her, she looked more upset than I had ever seen her. Sobbing, she told me that the doctor had just called. There was a problem with the baby…

Happy Puppet Syndrome

By Chef Error666

\\Message from the author: “Special thanks to Christian Harris for helping me. I mean no offense to people with Angelman Syndrome. I just thought the symptoms could be manipulated into something creepy.”\\

It was simple, we thought. Take a few chromosomes, slice them up, put them over there, and hey, perfect human being. I’m still not sure what went wrong. Maybe a miscalculation? A misprocedure? Or maybe something beyond our control. Who knows?

We (a few of my psychologist colleagues and I) were intrigued by human emotion. Anger, despair, euphoria. Was it possible to lock the mind into one emotion? To lock it into a euphoric state so that no sadness or anger would cloud its thought? Theoretically, yes.

I won’t describe the procedures of our experiments to you. Both because I wouldn’t want you to repeat them but also I fear I will go mad if I have to recount them. The terrible things we did. We were ambitious, youthful, nothing could stop us, and no one could tell us we were wrong. All I will tell is that we got ahold of a few stem cells, nurtured them into fetuses, and tampered ever so slightly with the genetics. The experiment was called “The Angel Man Project” and the goal was to create a being which felt only happiness. But something went wrong. Terribly wrong.

Half of the test subjects died unexpectedly, without warning and without cause. The remaining half were mostly born hideously distorted. Three were born well. Perfect, we thought. A human with mental capability beyond any other due to its locked euphoric state.

They were perfectly normal up to eighteen months. That’s when the first symptoms appeared. Lack of balance, trouble sleeping and eating, low responsiveness. We all panicked on the inside, of course, but on the outside we remained calm and continued the project. We should have ended there. We should have taken those damned subjects and euthanized them and burned them and closed the lab. But we continued.

Things only got worse. The subject’s movements became increasingly sporadic and they still could not utter words, although they could laugh and did so often. Much too often. Not happy laughter, but quiet, almost nervous laughing, nearly constant. No matter how much pain was inflicted on the subject it merely stared at you and laughed, as if it were mocking you, calling your attempts to harm it futile.

We expected the subjects to have extra learning capabilities. Quite the opposite occurred. Their mental development was severely delayed. They couldn’t pay attention to something for more than a few minutes before lapsing into a laughing fit. But we continued, hoping that these symptoms would clear up as the children got older. We gave a name to the symptoms. “Happy Puppet Syndrome”, because the mindless movements of the children made it seem like they were puppets on strings.

Five years into the project we realized there was no hope. We could no longer stand the incessant laughing of these children; as if they knew something we did not, as if some kind of joke passed between them. To look at a child and to see it twitch sporadically and laugh excessively is a haunting thing. Two of my colleagues had already quit because they could not stand it. I never heard from them afterwards. They are most likely dead.

The children had not talked for five years. Only laughed their damned laugh. We went in to give them breakfast and they stared at us with their huge eyes, twitching, giggling, and saying nothing. We lay the meal in front of them and left. The meal was laced with toxins that would silently and painlessly kill the subjects. It was a painful thing to do, but it had to be done. However, it would not be that easy.

As a friend of mine set a tray of food down in front of one of the boys, the laughing stopped. The boy looked up at my friend, his eyes suddenly dark, dead serious, the laughing gone.

They continued to stare at him and twitch for a while. My friend was in shock and would not move. My colleagues and I stood with pen and notepad ready to take notes. Suddenly, my friend fell to his knees, grasping his head and yelling furiously. He appeared to be in tremendous pain. My colleagues and I were so surprised by this we could do nothing but sit and watch. My friend collapsed to the floor, yelling curses. He jerked violently a few times, and then went limp.

I held back the urge to be sick, more successfully than a few of my colleagues. Something about this was not normal. A dark presence seemed to tower over us. We immediately sealed the entrance. The boy stopped, looked at the door, and laughed. He fell to the floor, twitching and rolling about laughing insanely. The two others did the same. After a few minutes the fit ceased, and they stood up, still twitching, still giggling.

The lights went out. I heard crashes, glass shattering, screams. The most terrifying thing of all were the haunting whispers, coupled with the quiet laughing. When the lights went back on, the subjects were gone. Two of my colleagues lay unconscious beside me, their bodies twisted at odd angles, blood trickling from their drooping mouths. At first they appeared to be dead. They showed no vital signs. But as I leaned in, I could hear them laughing, ever so slightly. I went over to examine my friend. No pulse, no breathing, but he continued to laugh quietly.

Although the subjects had gone, I still felt as if something were watching me, something that was just at the edge of my vision but that I would never be able to see.

Me and one remaining colleague closed everything down immediately. Before leaving we destroyed our research and locked and barricaded the lab. I lost communication with my colleagues. I presume they are dead.

I still feel like I am watched. I still hear the laughing, the whispering, in my dreams and sometimes when I am awake. When I do, I run. I get up and I leave wherever I am. I’m not able to stay in the same place for more than a few days because of this.

It spread. Other children were seen with similar symptoms. I have no idea how it spread, it shouldn’t be something that spreads. Somebody somewhere made something up about disjunction of the 15th chromosome, and that kept the people happy and in the dark, for now. The disease was coined “Angelman Syndrome”. So far the spawn are not dangerous. But I know the originals still lurk somewhere.

I know they are coming for me. I know they will find me. I accept this. It is what I get for attempting to tamper with nature. I leave this letter here as a warning. They are coming for you, too. They are coming for all of us. If ever you hear whispering, laughing, at the edge of your hearing, run. If ever you feel as if something stands right at the edge of your sight, but you cannot look at it, run.

Also, I warn you this. One: do not tamper with what is not yours. Two: Even Angels can be Demons in disguise. And three: Do not come for me. I am as good as dead.

***

The following manuscript was found in an abandoned and hidden laboratory discovered deep in an Alaskan forest. The laboratory consisted of an observation room and a containment room. The containment room was barricaded and locked, and the entire lab seemed to have caught fire at one point. Traces of blood were found after the containment room was breached, and a window was shattered. The exact nature of this lab is yet undiscovered.